– by Joseph Jammer Medina

Every year, the folks over at the American Film Institute (AFI) list films that they deem the most “culturally and artistically significant” films and TV shows and compile them in a list for all the world to see. What were the big, heavy-hitting stories Hollywood saw fit to put to celluloid. This is the same organization that put together the ever-changing 100 Greatest American Films — the same organization that still puts f***ing Citizen Kane at the top of the list each year.

Now, AFI has officially announced their current list for 2016.

Check it out below!


Hacksaw Ridge
Hell or High Water
La La Land
Manchester by the Sea


The Americans
Better Call Saul
The Crown
Game of Thrones
The Night Of
The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story
Stranger Things
This is Us

Yet when all said and done, the pretentiousness couldn’t prevent some pretty stellar content from hitting this year’s top 10. While on the movie front, the list is populated by the predictable Oscar contenders like La La Land and Moonlight, it’s also home to Zootopia, a flick that managed to exceed a lot of expectations and provide some timely social commentary — a commentary that’s perhaps most applicable after the election we’ve just gone through. Since Zootopia is the most likely contender for Best Picture winner at the Academy Award, I suppose one could argue that it still fits the Oscar profile, but when all said and done, animated films rarely see the same prestige as their live-action counterparts.

The TV front also has a big surprise in the form of Stranger Things. This was a series that managed to hit the pop culture zeitgeist in a huge way. It inspired many spoofs, and helped to elevate Netflix’s status as a viable network even higher. I guess when all said and done, the inclusion of this show shouldn’t be all too surprising, as it did impact our culture in a way, and with more seasons on the way, we can only imagine what further impact it could have.

Returning this year for TV are The Americans, Better Call Saul, and Game of Thrones, and given the general high bar of quality storytelling that’s being maintained, I think that’s something to be celebrated.

What do you think of this year’s list? Let us know your thoughts down below!

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Joseph Jammer Medina is an author, podcaster, and editor-in-chief of LRM. A graduate of Chapman University's Dodge College of Film and Television, Jammer's always had a craving for stories. From movies, television, and web content to books, anime, and manga, he's always been something of a story junkie.